New teachers join the Baron family

By John Le and Ella Wallace, Staff Writers

For the 2017-2018 school year, seven new teachers joined the Baron family at Fountain Valley High School (FVHS). With high hopes about their school year, each teacher has their own set of goals for them and their students. We interviewed some teachers to hear about their new hopes and expectations for the school year. 

Ms. Kiersti Hunkle

Subject: English

Having taught here during the second semester of the 2016-2017 school year, Ms. Hunkle, a new English teacher on campus, already feels settled despite it being the first few weeks of school.

Kiersti Hunkle shows off one of her favorite books: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Photo by Aminah Khan.

“The great thing about this year is that my nerves were gone. I didn’t feel super new; I saw some of my old students. I taught freshmen last year, and this year I have sophomores, so I have some familiar faces in the class,” said Hunkle on this year’s experiences compared to last year’s.

Growing up in the area and student-teaching at Marina High School, she decided that teaching at a place close to home would be a good choice for her. “It’s a great place to work; I love it,” said Hunkle.

Though she teaches four classes this year, her goals for them all are to make sure her students are challenged no matter what their level, and for them to feel proud of what they’ve accomplished by the end of the year.

She also hopes to experience more on campus, such as going to a school dance and supporting her students outside of the classroom by attending more extracurricular activities.

Mr. David Gutierrez

David Guitierrez is the new freshmen physical education teacher. Photo by Aminah Khan.

Subject: Physical Education

Mr. Gutierrez coached football at FVHS from 2009-2013, where he had also completed his student teaching. He had previously taught at Santa Ana High School, and had decided to come back to FVHS from his previous experiences here.

Gutierrez is very optimistic about his new year, as he is extremely impressed by his new students.

“My goal as a teacher is to continue to challenge students, and just depending on their individual need, to help challenge them to either become better in academics, achieve better physicals, or just become a better part of the Fountain Valley community,” said Gutierrez about his goals for the upcoming school year.

He would also like to participate in as many extracurriculars as he can, such as chaperoning the dances.

Mr. Gemmo Casabar

Subjects: French and Spanish

Gemmo Casabar teaches both Spanish and French. Photo by Aminah Khan.

One of the new teachers welcomed on campus this year is Mr. Casabar, teaching French and Spanish. What drew Mr. Casabar into Fountain Valley High School were all the comments he had heard about the campus: the students, district and the different programs available.

“I wanted to be a part of a community that provides students all the resources they need to succeed,” said Casabar.

During the first week of school, he found that his students were prepared for the upcoming year and excited to learn. He anticipates having fun and engaging with the students in his lessons for the upcoming year.

Teaching foreign languages, his goals as a teacher are to help his students speak at their appropriate level in the language they’re studying, as well as to empathize with other cultures and see differing perspectives.

Mr. Omar Perez-Rivas

Omar Rivas stands in front of the lesson plan for his Spanish class. Photo by Aminah Khan.

Subject: Spanish

Previously working at Chino Hills High School, Mr. Rivas has joined the Baron family for a new experience. As of now, he is enjoying his experience as a teacher so far.

“The students here are extremely friendly, and I am enjoying the environment around so far,” said Rivas regarding his first impressions of FVHS.

Mr. Rivas has many goals in mind for his students. He wants them all to learn Spanish, but also to learn to work with each other and respect one another.



Mr. Eduard Lavrov

Subjects: Economics and Computer Science

With a lengthy background of teaching at other schools, Mr. Lavrov came to the Baron home to teach the computer science program and economics. Lavrov has previously taught at Orange Crescent School, Troy High School and Locke High School.

“I don’t want to say a dream job, but I get to do the things I like to do,” said Lavrov.

Lavrov, so far, is enjoying his experience in the new Baron home. He states how the staff were welcoming, how his students are participating, and etc. As for goals, he would like to spread technology throughout staff and students in school.

Mr. Brandon Nguyen

Subject: Math

Graduating from Fountain Valley High School’s Class of 2012, Mr. Nguyen decided to come back to his alma mater to teach Algebra 1 and Accelerated Geometry. What compelled him to come back was his goal to become a teacher. During the 2016-2017 school year, he worked at Santa Ana High School.

As an Alma Mater, he is enjoying his route back to the Baron home. From his first impressions, Nguyen said, “The kids here are amazing, they’re very respectful and kind towards one another and their teachers. So definitely, our students are top-notch.” His goals for the school year are to connect to his students for his students to understand “work hard and to sacrifice”.